9 March 2021
Residential and rural update – March 2021 – 5 of 5 Insights
The ban on bailiff evictions that was introduced at the beginning of the pandemic and was due to end on 22 February has been extended for another six weeks until 31 March 2021. There are some exemptions for the most serious circumstances such as illegal occupation, anti-social behaviour and where there are arrears of six months or more.
Landlords are required to give six months' notice to tenants before starting possession proceedings (subject to some limited exemptions). In essence, this means that most short-term tenants can now stay in their homes until at least August 2021.
A reminder that the additional 2% SDLT surcharge for overseas buyers comes into effect for all residential transactions completing after 31 March 2021. A specific SDLT residence test will apply. An individual purchase will be UK resident if they are in the UK on 183 days or more during any 365-day period starting a year before the purchase and ending a year after it.
The stamp duty holiday that has been in place since summer 2020 and which created a temporary nil rate band for SDLT on the first £500,000 of consideration has been extended to 30 June 2021. Transactions must be completed on or before 30 June (not just exchanged) to benefit from the current arrangements. 1 July to 30 September will mark a transitional period during which the nil rate band will be set at £250,000 rather than the usual £125,000. From 1 October, the usual arrangements will resume.
As part of the UK government's recently announced plan to fund the removal of unsafe cladding from high rise buildings, a new "Gateway 2" levy is to be introduced which will apply when developers seek planning permission to develop certain high-rise residential buildings. It seems likely that this will operate similar to CIL payments, but details are awaited.
A new tax on the development sector to be introduced next year with the aim of raising £2bn over the next 10 years. Currently there is very little detail about how these arrangements will work, specifically which developers will be subject to the new tax. Details are to be presented in a consultation paper.
Industry reaction has included concern that this will discourage developers from creating housing in high density areas, increase prices of properties on such developments, and unfairly penalise those developers who have had no part in the cladding crisis.
To discuss any of the issues raised in this article, please reach out to a member of our Residential & Rural team.
by Lisa Bevan
by Lisa Bevan